Connect with us
Jim Cutler Demos

Sports TV News

CNN’s Jeff Zucker To Oversee Turner Sports

“The man he is replacing, David Levy, plays an active role in securing rights deals with the NCAA, the NBA and Major League Baseball for Turner.”

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

AT&T’s purchase of Time Warner has caused some corporate reshuffling. David Levy is out as president of Turner, and that means a new leader is needed for Turner Sports. AT&T will hand the reigns of that division over to CNN President Jeff Zucker according to Joe Flint of The Wall Street Journal.

Flint noted in his report that not only is Zucker a huge sports fan, but that he even cited ESPN’s First Take as his guide for remaking CNN’s election coverage. It is something Zucker spoke about in a 2017 New York Times profile.

 Zucker is a big sports fan and from the early days of the campaign had spoken at editorial meetings about wanting to incorporate elements of ESPN’s programming into CNN’s election coverage. “The idea that politics is sport is undeniable, and we understood that and approached it that way,” he told me. Toward that end, the network built “pregame” sets outside debate halls with excited crowds in the background and created a temporary rooftop studio for the final weeks of the campaign with sweeping views of the White House and the Washington Monument. An on-screen countdown clock ticked down the days (then hours) to Nov. 8. Trump, the trash-talking (and trash-Tweeting) underdog who inspired raw, powerful feelings among supporters and detractors alike, was the ideal subject for this narrative framework.

Jonathan Mahler, The New York Times

Prior to taking the reigns at CNN, Zucker rose through the ranks at NBC. He started as a producer for NBC News before moving on to run The Today Show and eventually becoming CEO of NBC Universal.

By all accounts, Zucker took a hands-off approach to NBC Sports during his time as CEO of NBC Universal. The man he is replacing, David Levy, plays an active role in securing rights deals with the NCAA, the NBA and Major League Baseball for Turner. It remains to be seen how involved Zucker will have to be in that process. Also waiting to be determined is the future of Lenny Daniels, who has served as president of Turner Sports since 2014.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Sports TV News

Report: Dusty Baker to Once Again Join TBS for MLB Coverage

Baker worked with TBS in a similar capacity in 2015 and was also an analyst for ESPN in 2006 and 2007.

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

Screengrab of Dusty Baker on MLB Network
Screengrab: MLB Network

World Series champion Dusty Baker, the former player and manager, is headed back to TBS. According to a report from Ryan Glasspiegel of the New York Post, the former player and manager will take part in some regular season broadcasts and will be a part of the studio team for the postseason where he is expected to work with co-analysts Pedro Martinez, Jimmy Rollins and Curtis Granderson.

Baker worked with TBS in a similar capacity in 2015 and was also an analyst for ESPN in 2006 and 2007.

A three-time Manager of the Year, Baker managed over 4,000 games over 26 years before retiring after the 2023 season. Baker spent time with the San Francisco Giants, the Chicago Cubs, the Cincinnati Reds, the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros, who he won a World Series with in 2022.

As a player, Baker played 19 seasons, mostly with the Atlanta Braves and the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was a two-time All-Star and won a World Series in 1981.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

Sports TV News

Caitlin Clark, Angel Reese Matchup on ESPN is Most-Watched WNBA Game Since Memorial Day 2001

Eight of the nine games with more than an average of 1 million viewers have included Clark and the Fever.

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

WNBA on ESPN Logo
Courtesy: ESPN

The Indiana Fever and Chicago Sky have been embedded within the conversation surrounding the WNBA this season as both teams aim to contend for a league championship. The Fever selected Iowa guard and NCAA Basketball all-time scoring leader Caitlin Clark with the first-overall selection in the WNBA Draft, while the Sky chose LSU forward and former national champion Angel Reese seventh. Clark and Reese faced one another for the third time in the WNBA on Sunday, drawing an average of 2.3 million viewers on ESPN. It was the second consecutive week in which a matchup between these two rookies surpassed 2 million viewers and represents the most-watched WNBA game since Memorial Day 2001.

Before the WNBA season began, the league had not surpassed an average of 1 million viewers for a game in 16 years. Amid the 2024 regular season as it stands, the league has shattered that outcome nine times with more than half of the schedule to go. Eight of those nine games have had Clark and the Fever, which includes the team’s Friday night game against the Atlanta Dream. That matchup averaged 1.18 million viewers on ION, the largest WNBA audience the network has ever attained as it continues the second season of its three-year media rights deal.

Reese, along with Sky rookie Kamilla Cardoso, received media exemptions following a change in the WNBA media season access policy. This means that they will be exempt from media availability following morning shootarounds; however, they will still be available in pregame and postgame windows throughout the season. It is unknown if this change will extend to other teams around the league as the season continues, but the rule states that two members of the team can be exempt from speaking with media after morning shootaround. Sky players had previously demonstrated frustration by questions pertaining to the flagrant 1 foul committed by Sky guard Chennedy Carter on Clark in early June.

The NBA is reportedly negotiating media rights deals including the WNBA and is expected to leave a slate of games available for a separate deal later. NBA media rights are expected to be granted to The Walt Disney Company (ESPN/ABC), NBCUniversal and Amazon’s Prime Video following the conclusion of next season, although no resolutions have officially been announced. Reports have indicated that the NBA expected to net $76 billion over the term of the new deals, which would nearly triple the fiscal value of its existing rights. Moreover, the WNBA could quadruple the money it receives from media rights to $240 million per year, according to a recent report from Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

Sports TV News

FOX Sports Draws Over 3 Million Viewers for USMNT Copa América Opener

This makes the game the most watched non-World Cup soccer telecast ever on FOX.

Barrett Sports Media

Published

on

FOX Sports Logo

Sunday night’s soccer matchup between the United States Men’s National Team and Bolivia, which the USMNT won 2-0 drew an average audience of 3,165,000 viewers on FOX Sports according to Nielsen Media Research and Adobe Analytics. This makes the game the most watched non-World Cup soccer telecast ever on FOX and the most watched English language Copa América telecast ever in the United States.

The game peaked at 4,013,000 viewers from 6:30 p.m. ET to 6:45 p.m. ET. The top local markets were San Diego, Washington D.C., Austin and Kansas City.

FOX Sports said the game was up 191% from last year’s USMNT Concacaf Gold Cup telecast and up 108% from the 2016 average of USMNT Copa América Group Stage telecasts which were carried on FS1.

The next USMNT Copa América game is scheduled for Thursday, Jun 27 against Panama at 6 p.m. ET on FOX, followed by another Group Stage game on Monday, July 1 at 9 p.m. ET on FS1. The CONMEBOL Copa América is taking place in the U.S. through Sunday, July 14.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading
Advertisement

Advertisement

Upcoming Events

Barrett Media Writers

Copyright © 2024 Barrett Media.